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The Walker Arts Center Announces its 2012-13 Performing Arts Season

The Walker Art Center announced its 2012-13 performing arts season on Thursday, and it looks to be another good one. Highlights include a new solo work by performance artist Laurie Anderson, an experimental multimedia/music piece by Wilco guitarist Nels Cline and several of his friends, and a day-long 60th birthday bash for composer/musician/producer John Zorn.

In all there are six commissioned works, three world premieres,…

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Justin Jones: RadioBrain & the SCREEN / the THING at the Southern Theater

The theremin is an electronic instrument, patented in 1928, which consists of a couple of antennae that the performer does not actually need to touch to make sound. Instead, the performer simply waves his hands in the air around the antennae, calling forth sounds almost as if he were conducting an invisible orchestra. The theremin has a buzzy tone and no set tuning (it slides…

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Donna Uchizono Dance’s Thin Air @ the Walker

After Thin Air, the Donna Uchizono show at the Walker, I overheard a man asking a Minneapolis dancer, “So what did it mean?” She wisely ducked the question, listing instead a few elements she saw. Similarly, a friend told me that he doesn’t know what to say about a dance if he doesn’t recognize the references—the influences, the history. “I don’t normally write about that,”…

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“like a movie I saw once” (the remake) @ Bryant-Lake Bowl

Laurie Van Wieren’s “like a movie I saw once,” which graced the Bryant-Lake Bowl stage last weekend, and is definitely worth seeing if Van Wieren ever does it again, is short and sweet, forty-five minutes of Minneapolis’s most engaging performers at play. Chan Holman (new to me, but clearly on a star path) sings standards in silly ways: “Ch-Ch-Changes” becomes a sputtering aria, while Holman…

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Movin’ Out @ The Orpheum

Recently, Ron Rosenbaum wrote a—well a rant, really, for Slate.com titled “The Worst Pop Singer Ever”, in which he used the recent death of painter Andrew Wyeth, whose work is arguably both dreadfully sentimental crap and American genius, to account for the unfathomable popularity of the Piano Man, Billy Joel.

Rosenbaum begins his long, long tirade with this disclaimer:

I’m reluctant to pick…

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12.11.08: The Little Match Girl @ The Ritz

There’s always something “let’s put on a show!” about the Ballet of the Dolls. This can be charming (as I’ll explain in a moment), but if you’re not in the mood–if you’ve come in grumpy and would just like your entertainment straight up–please, then you’re apt to be painfully aware of the mere humanness of it all. More so because the Dolls traffic in Broadway-esque…

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11.22.08: TU Dance @ the O’Shaughnessy

Dance: it’s all just movement. This less-than-inspiring thought comes to me as I’m watching TU Dance’s fall concert open with “Sense(ability) Sketch 1,” a first step towards an eventual evening-length work on Ayurveda. Some people are wheeling around in anguished twists and shaken-free leaps, some are riding cheerfully by on bikes, the harsh modern classical music has words, and yes, apparently the whole is about…

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10.17.08: Minnesota Dance Theatre’s Extreme Odyssey @ The Lab

Melanie
The pas de deux from George Balanchine’s Agon (1957) still startles with its transformation of the classical partnered dance. The two dancers maintain their courtly relationship (he offers, she accepts), but they are no longer characters (a man, a swan princess) acting out their love; they are ideas, compass…

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9.16.08: Zorongo Flamenco’s Romeria @ Minnehaha Falls Park

What happens when the earth is neglected? Zorongo Flamenco Dance Co. asks this question in artistic director Susana di Palma’s new production, which is based on Federico Garcia Lorca’s play Yerma and divided into two separate shows, this month’s Romeria and October’s Marchita. This two-part structure is daring in itself, but Zorongo goes further than that: they’re presenting Romeria outside, on several stages at Minnehaha…

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